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Failed an Inspection

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I wired my daughter's hot tub and failed.

1. Schedule 40 PVC was not adequately supported along the 70' run all straps were 36" or less EXCEPT 2, of those one, was at 38" and one was 42" spacing . Decent call I messed up eyeballing them.
2. Forgot a KO blank in the panel. I was wrong again.
3. Schedule 40 PVC installed 1" off the ground in a flower bed, the inspector said it was not properly protected and needed to be schedule 80 PVC. While I was possibly wrong, I never gave this a thought as to what would damage this run at that level. I Raised the PVC up, more noticeable now but should pass.
4. Conductors lose at CBs. I used a calibrated torque wrench and torqued to GE specs (I did not do a pull test). He pulled 2 of the 4 conductors out of the CBs. It was obvious they were tightened and all strands (#10 AWG and #6 AWG) were splayed out. A MAJOR hack job and I was not happy with my work

I reinstalled the conductors and torqued and was able to pull the same conductors out of the CBs (1 GE one Square D). Then I over-tightened the GE and it held but the Square D pulled out. I checked to see if the termination screw was stripped out and it was not. I then put too much ass into the tightening and the conductor held. This was a 2-pole 20 amp GFCI, Lowes and HD did not have one in stock so next trip north I will replace it.

I hate failing inspections.

I was surprised the hot tub had 2 branch circuits one 30 amp and one 20 amp both 240 branch circuits.
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Yes Brian , I would like to speak to all you apprentice wiremen about something. Torque spec's for other than screw terminals are sometimes pretty much somebody pulled the numbers out of their ass without actually checking to see if it was a proper specification or not. Even with large lugs that require an allen torque wrench , I have seen the conductors pull out with very little effort. I prescribe you to spend a few years working alongside a Journeyman electrician and then young man you will learn how to put the wire in there Gootentite.
 

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You were the new boy in town maybe and some inspectors like to show their power. The strapping and the pvc near the flower bed needing shedule 80 is BS imo.
It's a code. I see broken pvc runs in my little spec of dust floating out in the sea almost every week. For myself, I consider not subject to physical damage at eye level. All the rest below that need 80.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yes Brian , I would like to speak to all you apprentice wiremen about something. Torque spec's for other than screw terminals are sometimes pretty much somebody pulled the numbers out of their ass without actually checking to see if it was a proper specification or not. Even with large lugs that require an allen torque wrench , I have seen the conductors pull out with very little effort. I prescribe you to spend a few years working alongside a Journeyman electrician and then young man you will learn how to put the wire in there Gootentite.
In the county where this was done they are big on torquing all connections, If asked I wanted to be able to tell him the truth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You were the new boy in town maybe and some inspectors like to show their power. The strapping and the pvc near the flower bed needing shedule 80 is BS imo.
The utilities use schedule 40 PVC for underground services and that is definitely at ground level from exit of earth to the meter.
 

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In the county where this was done they are big on torquing all connections, If asked I wanted to be able to tell him the truth.
That is precisely why I now torque receptacle outlets and switches . In case of being asked by authorities I don't want to lie about it. But I stand with the fact that the levels are not always correct for the lugs. Screws around outlets seem to be fine, meter lugs not so much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Utilities are not subject to NEC .
I know, just making a point there are literally 100,000s of services fed with schedule 40 PVC, if there was any concern from weed whackers or lawnmowers the utility would use schedule 80 PVC or install a protective cover. Heck for that matter around here they use a thin wall PVC cover on the pole for transitions from overhead to underground.
 

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I wired my daughter's hot tub and failed.

1. Schedule 40 PVC was not adequately supported along the 70' run all straps were 36" or less EXCEPT 2, of those one, was at 38" and one was 42" spacing . Decent call I messed up eyeballing them.
2. Forgot a KO blank in the panel. I was wrong again.
3. Schedule 40 PVC installed 1" off the ground in a flower bed, the inspector said it was not properly protected and needed to be schedule 80 PVC. While I was possibly wrong, I never gave this a thought as to what would damage this run at that level. I Raised the PVC up, more noticeable now but should pass.
4. Conductors lose at CBs. I used a calibrated torque wrench and torqued to GE specs (I did not do a pull test). He pulled 2 of the 4 conductors out of the CBs. It was obvious they were tightened and all strands (#10 AWG and #6 AWG) were splayed out. A MAJOR hack job and I was not happy with my work

I reinstalled the conductors and torqued and was able to pull the same conductors out of the CBs (1 GE one Square D). Then I over-tightened the GE and it held but the Square D pulled out. I checked to see if the termination screw was stripped out and it was not. I then put too much ass into the tightening and the conductor held. This was a 2-pole 20 amp GFCI, Lowes and HD did not have one in stock so next trip north I will replace it.

I hate failing inspections.

I was surprised the hot tub had 2 branch circuits one 30 amp and one 20 amp both 240 branch circuits.
You’re fired! 🤣
 

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In the county where this was done they are big on torquing all connections, If asked I wanted to be able to tell him the truth.
When I tighten a stranded wire in a setscrew lug, I tighten using my wrist clicker. :whistle:

Seriously though I use a system where I tighten, then back off then tighten again. In practice it works like this.

Turn until tight and note where the screw slot or a reference point on the bolt is.

Back off a quarter turn.

Tighten again and note that the screw has now advanced farther.

Back off a quarter turn.

Tighten again and see it's went a bit farther yet again.

Repeat this until the process has no farther progress.

Now I can feel the flames coming already, but I'm not talking about strand crushing, thread stripping torque, just normal stuff. This is similar to getting a Kearney tight by banging on it to settle and nest the strands of wire together and not merely stacked precariously on top of one another. When you put a wire in a lug, the strands don't nest together right off, and the alternating tighten and loosen action settles them all nicely.
 

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in my area "exposed" PVC is required to be schedule 80 at any height
under ground, under house, or in attic only for 40
and yes the whole area, poco included allows the top of the sch40 sweep to be exposed a few inches until you couple on with 80
i am with you on the weed whacker point. however i dont recall seeing any damage in the past
i usually put three straps on every joint, one at the first coupling, then 2 more spread over the length. it eventually allows a slight sag, but i have never been called on it.
i just think of it as expansion room lol
 

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When I tighten a stranded wire in a setscrew lug, I tighten using my wrist clicker. :whistle:

Seriously though I use a system where I tighten, then back off then tighten again. In practice it works like this.

Turn until tight and note where the screw slot or a reference point on the bolt is.

Back off a quarter turn.

Tighten again and note that the screw has now advanced farther.

Back off a quarter turn.

Tighten again and see it's went a bit farther yet again.

Repeat this until the process has no farther progress.

Now I can feel the flames coming already, but I'm not talking about strand crushing, thread stripping torque, just normal stuff. This is similar to getting a Kearney tight by banging on it to settle and nest the strands of wire together and not merely stacked precariously on top of one another. When you put a wire in a lug, the strands don't nest together right off, and the alternating tighten and loosen action settles them all nicely.
my answer to making stranded nest in a lug is to wiggle the whole wire hard every turn or so of tightening, even after it is tight enough. invariably this makes it looser (better nested)
for large wires and lugs sometimes i wiggle and tighten one more time when i have finished working in the panel. i also eyeball the depth of both set screws to see if one is noticeably higher. this will alert me to a strand that never uncrossed and nested. common enough on 4/0 alu. my torque for 4/0 is tight as i can get it without breaking the lug out of the mounting. i have never been back to one of my jobs and found wires loose, or damaged from being loose
 

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Hackenschmidt
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A story pole would have been an ideal application here . . .
This is one of the things where a folding rule is handy, it's a ready made story pole. You can put a wrap of tape in the right spot if you don't like squinting at the markings.
 

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Imo, the inspector has no right to loosen the connection you made. Unfortunately there isn't any way to enforce that torque rule. As an inspector the best you can do is have a torque tool and make sure it was torqued tightly but there is no way to know if it was over torqued
 

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Hackenschmidt
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I know, just making a point there are literally 100,000s of services fed with schedule 40 PVC, if there was any concern from weed whackers or lawnmowers the utility would use schedule 80 PVC or install a protective cover. Heck for that matter around here they use a thin wall PVC cover on the pole for transitions from overhead to underground.
I have not seen PVC damaged by lawn mowers but I have had PVC get chopped through by weed whackers a number of times. ¯\_ (ツ)_/¯

Edit to add, not a pipe but enclosure, I have had those ruined the day they were installed when hit by a lawn tractor, but that was a 24x36 mounted with the top 6' high on a steel column. They had the bucket raised and ran right into it.
 

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Hackenschmidt
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4. Conductors lose at CBs. I used a calibrated torque wrench and torqued to GE specs (I did not do a pull test). He pulled 2 of the 4 conductors out of the CBs. It was obvious they were tightened and all strands (#10 AWG and #6 AWG) were splayed out. A MAJOR hack job and I was not happy with my work
Imo, the inspector has no right to loosen the connection you made. Unfortunately there isn't any way to enforce that torque rule. As an inspector the best you can do is have a torque tool and make sure it was torqued tightly but there is no way to know if it was over torqued
I think that's to say the inspector tugged them and they pulled out.

The torque rule is unenforceable but it's even more a pisser that you can go through the motions, get your calibrated torque wrench etc., and have a bad connection where the gutentight method plus tug test would have given you a good connection.
 
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